Disney, Devotionals and Downtime
This week I spent some time looking around online for some resources offering support for a friend. No matter if you face cancer or some other situation, the online world offers a ton of information and the chance to connect with others who’ve also stood in your shoes. I happened to run across a website where people blogged about their experiences and gave a voice to their situations. I was reminded of the power of sharing our stories, no matter what point in the journey we’re on. I’ve taken a break from this blog over the past several months to work through issues I face privately versus publicly. And it’s been much needed. However running across posts written by others who’ve faced difficult times inspired me to start updating this blog again. Semicolon Stories is my blog to show what life is like having faced colon cancer at a young age. So to all of you who keep up with my journey, here’s an update. And for all of you just now finding this blog and looking for someone else who’s faced such a hard cancer diagnosis at such a young age – welcome.
I thought I’d just give you a quick update on all things life lately. First off… vacay.
As someone who freelanced for several years, having paid time off where I get paid to relax is new to me. It’s been pretty great. My step-brother’s wedding in Florida took us to the Sunshine State. And while we were there, we extended our trip and skipped over to the magical world of Disney. It was worth every long line and expensive $10 hamburger to see my 4-year-old’s face light up princess after princess. We met a total of seven magical ladies during our visit to the Magic Kingdom. I even got a little giddy to meet Merida, the princess from Brave. We stayed in a place that offered a poolside room, complete with a Tiki Bar. The hubby and I took advantage of that during nap time. It was fun to get away, hang out with the family and relax.
One thing I did on this vacation that I’ve never done before is cook. Over the past year I’ve cleaned up my diet and stuck to an exercise routine. So after day 4 of eating out and inhaling not-so-great food, I’d had enough. So had my itty-bitty colon. Luckily we booked a condo that came with a kitchen. We hit the grocery store one night and I cooked all of our meals for the rest of our trip. Not only did it lessen my stress, the food was safer, healthier and better for us. Yay.
I’ve enjoyed this time to unplug and rest up. My blogs have benefited too – writing is my hobby. But I’ll tell you – I’m excited to go back to work on Monday. I think that’s a really good thing. I’ve missed my team and the work that I do. I still feel blessed to have what I consider my “dream job” and work in colon cancer all day long. I can’t wait to get back to my buddies at Fight CRC.
Part of what took me away from this blog was the fact I started up a new blog where I post devotionals. I’ve had the opportunity to be published in a few Christian devotional books and through that process realized it’s where my passion lies. I love
writing them. So – I started a website specifically for me as a writer and speaker… it’s where I post my writings that have a faith angle to them. If you’d like to check it out… here’s the link! The great thing is that you can sign up and have the latest devotional emailed to you, which makes me smile.
What’s downtime? But really. I’m still learning to carve out days and nights full of downtime in the midst of a busy life. I travel for work quite a bit and between family commitments and other fun things that come up, we tend to stay really active. Downtime is more of a wish than a reality some weeks. But then again, I’m blessed for it. I can’t help but see it any other way.
Although the freshness of a cancer diagnosis and treatment has worn off, I still find myself forever remembering what it was like to have too much downtime. The memories of my inability to stand in the shower for 5 minutes, much less travel on an airplane or take a road trip in a car, are ever-present. The fact that I’m physically able to stay very active and on-the-go is a blessing in-and-of itself. And I’m thankful for it. Each place I go, I try to carve out downtime while I’m there. I’m a big fan of naps (the fatigue never really ever goes away.) And our family does make sure to rest up and take it easy as much as we can. I’m happy to be healthy and in this place. It’s something I truly don’t take for granted.
That’s a quick update on life lately. I promise to update more often. Sometimes in the midst of colon cancer you wonder if you’ll ever feel normal again. I’m here to say you will… it’s a “new normal,” but there certainly is life after colon cancer. And I’m one voice that’s here to talk about it.